This is the new installment of the und. Cover project, where we invite local designers, illustrators and other creatives to design a custom cover for und. Athens! We then take the opportunity to tell their story and share their latest news on our platform.
The first und. Cover for 2018 is designed by young illustrator Ioanna Alexopoulou, who was born in Athens in 1992 and studied graphic design at Vakalo School of Art and Design. In her early 20's Ioanna created several works in public spaces, but her main focus has been illustration and self-publishing. In 2015, she was one of the young artists participating in the Hello Future! Talents' Archive project organised by the Onassis Cultural Centre in Athens, an international project showcasing the work of emerging talent from many cities. In addition to her own self-published zines, she has designed posters for art events and performances in Athens.
Ioanna Alexopoulou made her first fanzine in 2013, called Vrachnoredious (Βραχνορέντιους), that was released during that year’s Athens Comicdom. Although its first issue was unfortunately its last, the zine made waves in the local illustration and comic community, thanks to its imaginative hand-drawn illustrations and comics, its hand-made collages and photographs. As a way to promote Vrachnoredious, Ioanna also created a second, small-sized fanzine titled Lipos Albatross (Albatros Fat), which borrowed its title from a scene in Kurt Vonneghut’s The Cat’s Cradle. This smaller publication turned out to become a fanzine in its own right, and still gets a new issue almost every three months that is distributed exclusively from hand to hand.
Ioanna Alexopoulou’s most recent work in a four-page comic published in Μπλε Κομήτης (Blue Comet), a brand new comic magazine that is published every three months and collaborates mostly with Greek comic artists, many of whom are young and emerging. The magazine has just had its second issue released in December 2017, and combines many different styles and artists, functioning as a platform for all that’s current in the Greek comic scene. Ioanna Alexopoulou’s piece is based on a short story by Argyris Chionis titled “Absence”, from the book Το Οριζόντιο Ύψος και Άλλες Αφύσικες Ιστορίες (The Horizontal Height and other Unnatural Stories) by Kichli Publishing, that won the State Short Story Award in 2009. The story is beautifully told, and revolves around a young boy that grows into an old man, and reflects on how absence is “the only beast that man has not been able to tame”. The comic version of the story is hand-drawn in ink with great sensibility and attention to detail, in the monochrome style that Ioanna often chooses to work with. What really grabs our attention in the comic however is the minute detail with which she drew all the environments, as if the spaces and objects around the main characters are telling the story as much as the text.
For her und. Cover for January 2018, Ioanna Alexopoulou decided to redraw our logo and pair it with a little watercolour and pencil portrait of our mascot cat Sylvie playing with an und. Athens map. Visit our Facebook page to see the illustration, and leave your comments accordingly! You can find out more about Ioanna’s work on her website.
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